Trump’s broadside against Fauci represents his latest effort to cast doubt on the credibility of one of his administration’s most trusted public health officials.
But the tweet from the president also seemingly undermines the 30-second ad his campaign released Saturday, which prominently features Fauci assessing Trump’s handling of the coronavirus.
“I can’t imagine that … anybody could be doing more,” Fauci says in the ad — a quote he claimed Sunday was included “without my permission” and “taken out of context” from a broader statement about the federal pandemic response.
Fauci has continued to express his displeasure with the ad this week, emphasizing Monday that he has never endorsed a political candidate during his more than three decades as director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.
“To take a completely out of context statement and put it in which is obviously a political campaign ad, I thought was really very disappointing,” he told CNN in an interview Monday.